GdS: Predicted XIs for Milan vs. Genoa – Okafor and Bennacer set for intriguing roles

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan are back in action at San Siro on Sunday when they take on Genoa hoping to take another big step towards securing second place in the table.

La Gazzetta dello Sport (via Radio Rossonera) has some team news ahead of the game, one that will pit the soon to be ex-Milan manager Stefano Pioli against the former Rossoneri forward Gilardino, who returns to a stadium he has very fond memories of.

Mike Maignan remains injured for Milan so Marco Sportiello will be in goal. Fikayo Tomori and Theo Hernandez return from suspension and will be straight back into the side, but Davide Calabria and Yunus Musah will be missing due to suspension.

Maignan is joined by Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Tommaso Pobega and Luka Jovic in the treatment room as well, which means that Pioli’s choices are rather limited.

Alessandro Florenzi and Matteo Gabbia should complete the back four with Yacine Adli and Tijjani Reijnders in the midfield double pivot. Ismael Bennacer could return to operating in a more advanced role as he did late last season.

Christian Pulisic and Rafael Leao keep their places on the right and left wing respectively, and the source has Noah Okafor down as the starting striker over the departing Olivier Giroud.

Predicted Milan XI (4-2-3-1): Sportiello; Florenzi, Gabbia, Tomori, Theo Hernandez; Adli, Reijnders; Pulisic, Bennacer, Leao; Okafor.

Predicted Genoa XI (3-4-1-2): Martinez, Vogliacco, De Winter, Vasquez, Sabelli, Frendrup, Badelj, Martin, Gudmundsson, Ekuban, Retegui

Tags AC Milan Milan-Genoa


  1. Pioli is a really clueless. Why not play Pulisic at AM and Chukwueze at RW instead of playing Bennacer at AM? If this is true then I really hope Pioli leaves this summer. The new coach will get the best out of Chukwueze for sure. Smh

    1. He has done this 1000 times already. If he dosen’t like some player he wont play him no matter what. We dont even really need points any more. Why not let Chuk play the last games of the season as a starter to see how he will do.

      1. Because he does not care how Chuckwueze plays since he’ll be sacked at the end of the term. Pioli is showing the players that got us to second on the table loyalty. With your thinking why no play Musah, Okafor, Simic, Bartesaghi, and Zeroli and see how they do.

    2. You’re being very rash in your judgement, I don’t think Pioli is clueless. If he uses Chukw in the first half with Pulisic and Leao, he will have no one to use if he needs to make a replacement in the second half.

      Also having Chukw + Pulisic + Leao makes a very attacking team with very little defensive filter, especially considering that we are playing Florenzi ( a more attacking fullback than Calabria)

      Also Chukw has shown to go full intensity for 30 min and then run out, needs to learn to adjust intensity based on how opponents play…or will most likely be an impact sub in the last 30 min for the remaining games.

      You can blame Pioli all you want, but his decisions are not illogical. The real question is whether Pulisic or Chukw should play from the start…Pulisic has not been very bright recently, though the coach sees how the players work during the entire week…

      1. I can see logic in not starting the game with all our attacking players out there (except Giroud) so that we have options off the bench. However it probably makes the most sense to bench Pulisic and start Chuk & Leao on the wings. As Pulisic can come on and player either wing.

        Plus Pulisic looks tried and Chuk appears to be in form from the limited time we see him.

    3. My thoughts exactly. He is finishing the Nigerian’s career while he is on his way out. You need to choose the best form players. And Bennacer hasn’t been the same since coming back from injury. Chukwueze, Pulisic, Leao & Okafor is always what I had in mind. They would be a threat upfront. Just goes to show that Pioli is actually clueless in what he does.

  2. See Acmilan coach Pioli is the cause of his problem because pulisic is not a winger Pioli has make this mistakes countless times so I prefer chukwueze as winger then pulisic attacking midfield then benercer and rejnder double pivot

    1. What are you even talking about? Pulisic has almost always been a winger, and has had an excellent season for Milan at that position. Seriously, Chuku has a couple of decent games where he almost scores and all of a sudden he must start over the player that’s been 10 times better than him this season…

      1. For the last 5 weeks. Pulisic has looked flat and somewhat exhausted.
        Chuk has looked fit, in form and desperate to make an impact.
        He deserves some starts.

        It’s a dead rubber v Genoa.
        Give Chuk a start for f@#ks sake!

  3. The only positive here is that the rest of the 4 games don’t matter. So Pioli can keep shoving square pegs into round holes all he wants.

    1. I like reading some of your comments, but we won’t agree on this.

      He’s put together a reasonable formation based on the players that he has, I don’t see the reason for such strong words.

      If the rest of the 4 games don’t matter is because Pioli has kept this team above all but one team… yes he has good players but so do other teams, e.g. you can see how Roma is doing with Dybala, Lukaku and Pellegrini or Napoli with Kvara and Osimhen.

      Be careful what coach you wish for… you might get rid of a coach e.g. Allegri and end up with worse… e.g. Brocchi, Inzaghi, Seedorf, Montella and Giampaolo.

  4. Pioli is a gambler, he just throw things at the wall sometimes unimaginable ideas that even irrationally thinking person would find abysmal and see what sticks- the man is out of his depth.

  5. I understand your points, but let me counter, We are playing Genoa, it’s not a must win match!!!
    In other words, we don’t need to defend from the front(Bennacer), the last few games we have been lethargic in front, no invention and chances created, it’s always been Leao RLC Pulisic. Another Coach would use games like these to experiment, Leao Puli Chuk, let Puli play false 9, Reijnder Adli in the midfield and bennacer as Anchor(DM). Outrageous right, let him experiment. Sticking to a failed formula with reckless abandon because he prefers a certain crop of players is outlandish

  6. So we finally get to see someone else in the CAM role as RLC is injured. Putting aside the argument to play Pulisic there so that Chuk can come on at right wing. I understand Pioli doesn’t want 4 forwards in the front half so sees that this position needs to be a midfielder.

    Ok which one of your available midfielders will you play.
    I’ll pick Bennacer. The one most suited to be a DM at the back of midfield thanks!
    If ever there was a time to try Adli back in the CAM role I would have thought this was it.

  7. I’m at least glad that FINALLY he is not starting Giroud. Going with Giroud as this point is criminal, since he hasn’t contributed ANYTHING in the last several games. Stupid Pioli played him for 180 minutes against Roma in the Europa League and Giroud was a traffic cone. It’s like we played 180 minutes with 10 men and no striker. How can we win without a striker? Giroud is a great guy and I love him and will be forever thankful to him for what he did for Milan. But ever since he set his head at LA Football Club, he checked out and hasn’t contributed at all. There is absolutely no reason to play Giroud at this point, not even as a sub.

  8. It’s clear the team lacks a skilled natural AM – we had one CDK – we gave him away to Atalanta where he became indispensable.
    Now we are converting Bennacer, RLC or Pulisic to a role that they may not be compatible with

  9. 4 match left to raising bennacer price. Use him as starter in AMF and see what he can do . Okafor need to play too instead giroud

  10. what about Terracciano? why not start him as RB seeing as it is most of our starting defense, and then introducing Florenzi in his place if he is struggling. Would rather do that then start an ageing Florenzi who can barely run. Plus it would also help Gabbia to have a fast RB next to him

  11. If Pioli is going to Napoli for example – he will have no interest in prepping this MIlan side for next season. Personally if we are getting rid of him at the end of the season he should go now and we should let Abate make the team selection..
    FO Pioli

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